Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning Finance & Banking

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Guide to Doing Business in New Zealand: Major Forms of Business Organisation (Updated)

MAJOR FORMS OF BUSINESS ORGANISATION - A foreign company or investor proposing to establish a business in New Zealand may choose from a number of different entities or forms of business organisation. Each of these...more

IRS’s Proposed Section 529A Regulations for ABLE Programs: A Mixed Bag

The IRS today published, right on deadline, its proposed regulations relating to Section 529A state-sponsored “qualified ABLE programs,” under which tax-advantaged investment accounts may be established to fund future...more

New Maine Budget Would Make Numerous Tax Changes

Hoping to avoid a potential government shutdown, this week the Legislature passed a biennial budget that once again makes significant tax changes, but stops well short of the major tax reform desired by many legislators. The...more

Estate Planning Pitfall: Your IRA owns real estate

Most people invest their IRA funds in stocks, bonds and mutual funds. But others may opt for nontraditional investments, such as real estate, in the hope of boosting their returns. As this article details, when choosing to...more

Wealth Management Update - June 2015

June Interest Rates for GRATs, Sales to Defective Grantor Trusts, Intra-Family Loans and Split Interest Charitable Trusts - The June § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs and...more

Insight on Estate Planning - June/July 2015

In This Issue: - The basics of basis: Basis planning can result in significant tax savings - Does a private annuity have a place in your estate plan? - Estate tax relief for family businesses - Estate Planning...more

Intra-Family Loans: An Estate Planning Strategy in a Low-Interest-Rate Environment

In the current economic environment, IRS-prescribed monthly interest rates for certain intra-family transactions are at historic lows. As a result, an excellent opportunity exists to transfer wealth to lower generation family...more

Supreme Court Hits Home Run for 401(K) Plan Beneficiaries

This week’s decision by the United States Supreme Court in Tibble v. Edison International, 2015 U.S. LEXIS 3171 (May 18, 2015), is expected to trigger an increase in lawsuits against 401(k) plan fiduciaries....more

Supreme Court Decides Wellness International Network, Ltd. v. Sharif

On May 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Wellness International Network, Ltd. v. Sharif, (No. 13-935), holding that Article III does not prevent bankruptcy judges from entering final judgment on claims that seek only...more

Supreme Court Ruling Heightens Pressure on Fiduciaries to Monitor 401(k) Plan Investments

On May 18th, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held in Tibble et al. v. Edison International et al., No. 13-550 (S. Ct. May 18, 2015) that ordinary principles of trust law impose on ERISA fiduciaries a duty to continually...more

Supreme Court Instructs Ninth Circuit to Consider Common Law of Trusts in Applying ERISA's Statute of Limitations

The Supreme Court has once again emphasized the importance of ERISA’s origins in the common law of trusts, this time in interpreting its statute of limitations. On May 18, the Court reversed the Ninth Circuit’s decision in...more

The Evolving Duty of Trustee Communication with Beneficiaries

Trustee communications with beneficiaries have followed an interesting legal path in Kentucky. The original Kentucky statute regarding communication with the beneficiaries required that the trustee must keep the beneficiaries...more

Wealth Management Update - May 2015

May Interest Rates for GRATs, Sales to Defective Grantor Trusts, Intra-Family Loans and Split Interest Charitable Trusts - The May § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs and GRATs...more

CIMA: Proposed changes to outsourcing arrangements for funds service providers

The Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (“CIMA”) has recently released a draft Statement of Guidance: Outsourcing All Regulated Entities (Excluding Regulated Mutual Funds) (“SOG”) and Consultation Paper (“Paper”). The...more

Wealth Management Update - April 2015

Obama Administration Announces Revenue Proposals - The Obama Administration has recently announced its Fiscal Year 2016 Revenue Proposals in its annual "Greenbook." The Greenbook sets forth the Administration's proposals...more

Tax Policy Update

NUMBER OF THE WEEK: 6.5 percent. The tax rate at which companies could voluntarily repatriate their foreign earnings under the Invest in Transportation Act of 2015 (S. 981). Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Rand Paul (R-KY)...more

Special Needs Trusts and Financial Aid: What Should Applicants Do?

Out of all of the stress-inducing steps in the college application process, the financial aid application may be the most confusing and stressful of all, especially when an applicant can't afford to attend college without...more

Trustees Should Avoid Bitcoin

As bitcoin becomes increasingly popular, some are starting to ask: should trustees of trusts invest a portion of trust assets in bitcoin? There are very strong reasons why they should not. As I explain below, investing in...more

NCOIL Revises Unclaimed Property Model Act

The National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) recently adopted an enhanced Model Unclaimed Life Insurance Benefits Act to address particular concerns regarding the Social Security Death Master File (the DMF). The...more

Morgan Stanley Agrees to Resolution of Multi-State Unclaimed Property Audit

The California State Controller announced an Audit Resolution Agreement with Morgan Stanley on December 23, 2014, which sets forth the terms and conditions for finalizing and resolving an unclaimed property audit that Verus...more

Illinois Supreme Court Holds Accountant is Holder of Privilege, No Testamentary Exception

Late in the March term, the Illinois Supreme Court handed down its opinion in Brunton v. Kruger, an opinion with potentially significant implications for Illinois accountants. Brunton posed three related questions about the...more

Illinois Supreme Court Holds Information Provided to a CPA Is Privileged Information Held by the Accountant Alone

In examining the issue of the accountant-client privilege for the first time, the Supreme Court of Illinois recently ruled that the privilege belongs to the accountant, not the client. In Brunton v. Kruger, 2015 IL 117663...more

Reach Out And Designate Someone?

The seemingly staid world of retirement plan beneficiary designations was surprised by a recent federal appeals court decision suggesting that a new beneficiary could be designated by a telephone call. ...more

The Trustee's Power to Loan

Trust agreements often give trustees the power to make loans. When and how to exercise the power should be given significant thought. Upholding the fiduciary duty owed to all beneficiaries is always a key concern. ...more

Massachusetts Unveils Limited Amnesty Program

Beginning March 16, 2015, the Massachusetts Department of Revenue is offering an aptly described “limited” amnesty program for taxpayers with certain tax liabilities. Technical Information Release 15-2....more

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